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repeal of the Agricultural Act 1986(and amendments)

Comment 5th July 2010

This act allows tennants to stay in the farms forever and pass on to other members of the family.

They are often small uneconomical farms where retired farms reside and possibly have done since the war.  This act cost the landowner money to actually keep the tennant.  It means they have an asset that is a liability.  Rent can only be raised on 25 March with 2 years notice (in truth that means nearly every 3 years and  not that if they appeal and win).  The maintenance, insurances, etc are all paid by the landlord.  When the farmer retires it is still not possible to get a new tennant in to actually "farm" the land.  What often happen is the retired farmer lives in the farm at exceeding low rents and can pass ths "asset" on to other family members.  Even council owned small holdings have a clause where the tennant has to vacate the property when they retire.

There are several samll farms in this trap where they are owned and rented out in this manner and the land is not being used to its full potential and it does not encourage the landowner to make any improvements as in this cas it would be just throowing more money after bad.

Young farmers or would be farmers are desperate to rent starter farms like this as many cannot afford to buy and they are prevented by this act that keeps the farms in the hands of the retired until they die and the land is underused.


Why does this matter?

On Coutryfile it highlighted how many would be young farmers (hundreds of thousands) cannot find land or farms to rent.  If this act was removed it would release many farms for "active" use. It would also encourage the landowner to make improvements to the land and farm buildings as they would be able to get a return from their investment.

Many of the retired tennant farmers also sublet their land to the others at more rent for a few weeks grazing than they pay in rent for the whole farm.  It is time this act was removed so that farming could be fairer for both tennant and landowner and also gave young people an opportunity which they are excluded from becaulse of this out dated act.

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